Taking your pet to the vet helps keep your pet happy and healthy and is a vital part of being a good pet owner. If you have recently adopted a pet or have moved to a new area, choosing a new veterinarian for your pet to see can be a big decision. Below, let's take a look at why choosing a vet is so essential and what to look for when selecting a veterinarian.
Why Is Choosing a Vet so Important?
When it comes time to choose a veterinarian to provide care for your pet, you should do your homework regarding available veterinarians in your area. While you wouldn't just select a random doctor to provide healthcare for you or your family, the same holds for your pet. In many cases, you will have your veterinarian provide care for the life of your pet. Your veterinarian will help if your pet becomes injured or sick or exhibits behavioral issues. A vet is a vital asset and a partner that can help give your pet the best, healthiest life possible. If you choose a vet that works well with your approach to overall pet healthcare, you can create a partnership that is sure to provide lasting love, care, and support for your pet.
What Should I Consider When Choosing a Vet?
Choosing a veterinarian for your pet is a big decision and one that shouldn't be taken lightly. The chances are that your veterinarian will be the second most important factor to your pet's overall health. No "one size fits all" vet can provide the perfect care for every pet, so the solution is to simply find the best fit for your individual needs.
First and foremost, you'll want to find a veterinarian that is in your area. If you have to travel a far distance just for a wellness check, chances are your pet's annual visits may go by the wayside. Having a veterinarian that is far away can also be problematic if your pet has an emergency.
You'll want to find a veterinarian that has the necessary services for your pet. Some veterinarian offices will have in-house pharmacy services, while others may offer pet boarding. Specialty veterinarians may provide emergency care at their office, while others may see exotic animals outside the standard cat and dog. Be sure to seek a veterinarian that provides the necessary services to give your pet the best healthcare possible.
Like doctors, all veterinarians and practices will have different approaches to pet health care. Some will be cautious, administering multiple tests and medications immediately to remedy a condition or illness. Others will have a guarded approach, gradually ramping up care and treatment. Holistic vets are also becoming more popular, which provide different care than a conventional vet. Some veterinarians will give the pet owners an option, presenting the pros and cons of further medical care. There is no right or wrong approach to overall healthcare for your pet, but be sure to find a veterinarian that matches your preference for care.
Having open and thorough communication is critical when choosing a veterinarian. You want to find a practice that is open and willingly communicates with you regarding your pet's care. Ensure that everyone at the practice has the same communication habits, from the veterinarian to the receptions. You want to be sure you are getting accurate and complete information regarding your pet's health.
Before selecting your veterinarian, be sure to take a look at the veterinarian's office and facility. You'll want to make sure the office is clean, sterile, and professional. Take a quick tour of the facility and watch how the veterinarians and team members interact with animals and their owners. You want a professional yet upbeat and caring facility for your pet.
Ensure that your veterinarian has a team of professionals working around them that helps make the practice successful. Often, finding a veterinarian office with multiple practicing vets will give your pet the best possible care. Every veterinarian can contribute different options, thoughts, and skills that make the practice better as a whole. If you are considering choosing a veterinarian office made up of a conglomeration of vets, be sure to speak with the individual vets so that you can meet everyone at the practice.
If your pet has a condition, injury, or disease that requires special attention, you'll want to find a veterinarian office that is familiar with administering specialized treatment. Choosing a vet based on your pet's condition is vital for ongoing care for your pet. It is also important to consider changing veterinarians if your pet develops a disease later in life. If another specialized vet can provide concentrated and individualized care, making a switch for the betterment of your pet makes sense.
Do I Need a Regular Vet?
While certainly not necessary, it is a good idea to keep a consistent, regular vet. Having one vet that you routinely see is a great way to ensure your pet receives the best possible care. When your vet becomes familiar with your pet, they can notice slight changes over time that may indicate a troubling problem or developing condition. Further, having a regular vet is a great way to help your pet feel comfortable with exams, knowing they see a familiar face. Keeping a regular vet can help give your pet even better healthcare throughout its life.